Friday, December 23, 2016

Manchester by the Sea Movie Review

Casey Affleck stars in Manchester by the Sea

The Very One

Rotten Tomatoes Plot: After the death of his older brother Joe (Kyle Chandler), Lee Chandler (Casey Affleck) is shocked to learn that Joe has made him sole guardian of his nephew Patrick (Lucas Hedges.) Taking leave of his job, Lee reluctantly returns to Manchester-by-the-Sea to care for Patrick, a spirited 16-year-old, and is forced to deal with a past that separated him from his wife Randi (Michelle Williams) and the community where he was born and raised. Bonded by the man who held their family together, Lee and Patrick struggle to adjust to a world without him. Directed by Kenneth Lonergan.

Casey Affleck rises from "backup" to starter in Manchester by the Sea, an emotionally-draining yet simultaneously radiant film about perseverance and responsibility. Odds are (and this is where critics come in handy) it's not on your radar; but you should see it before the Oscars, since it's destined to be in the running for Best Picture. It's shot beautifully, and features just enough humor to counter a pair of bonafide tragedies. Kudos to Lonergan for tackling the aforementioned tragedy with a uniquely Massachusetts earnestness, highlighted by quick-ending scenes and terrific back-and-forth between Affleck, Chandler and Hedges. One of 2016's best.

Grade: B+